3 weeks post AF Ablation

Hi I'm a 58 year old lady that started having episodes of SVT when I was in my late 20's, having them on and off for years and sometimes scaring me so much would end up in hospital. In 2010 I had my first episode of rapid PAF and it has troubled me on and off since to the point I could no longer go to work other than on a casual basis. Its rather life changing in many ways! So I can relate to others and how they feel...

Many meds the specialist gave me I reacted to badly with chest pain or a slow heart rate that prevented me from having any sort of life. Asthma prevented me from taking many heart meds as well. Eventually I was put on Verapamil and Aspirin.

In July this year after a dreadful flu and pneumonia, I again went into rapid AF and ended up in hospital and felt like I was running a marathon. eventually was given doses of IV Verapamil to slow the heart and replacement Potassium and magnesium, finally I reverted without cardio version so that was good outcome, They stopped the Aspirin and I was discharged commenced on Rivaroxaban as a blood thinner for protection...only to bounce back into AF for short intervals with a persistent cough. Feeling my quality of life had gone down the tubes...

Feeling miserable went and saw my cardiologist who booked me in and performed the AF ablation 3 weeks ago. I came out of the GA with severe cramps and very agitated so the GA didn't agree with me but on the whole felt good. The first week I was on top of the world with no palps or AF to speak of that was bad and I didn't feel tired ,then like a bolt out of the blue in the second week I came tumbling down into a mess with what I can only say is PAF and strange uncontrolled ectopic beats that literally make my chest feel like there is a fight going on in there. Chest pain and discomfort as well. Went to ED last Friday night by ambulance after a sustained PAF that worried me and was commenced on Potassium replacement and Magnesium replacement as my diet is less than adequate because I now have severe reflux... (from reading here that seems to affect some people.) My stomach isn't happy and its debilitating at times. I am just about up to week 4 and things seem to be settling a bit, the heart palps are less and the tiredness is abating...I can at least sit up for a while in the afternoon without feeling bad lethargy, and have started to do stuff around the house again just small stuff as hubby has been my right and lefty hand with everything and I am so grateful for his help....My cardiologist is happy with my progress as I have phoned his office when I have been too concerned.

I have a 4 week r/v next week so we will see.....

My other problem is dealing with an incidental finding in my right lung a small but worrisome mark that at this stage could be anything so I am now facing months of being monitored ....having said that I'm glad its been found too....

So I am hoping a good outcome from the Ablation and I may not have AF for a while....I read others stories and accounts on here and this gives me confidence that all is going ok for me and I wish everyone on here well too

thanks everyone ....

Misseyj55

18 Replies

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  • So sorry you are having such a rough time. I hope that things continue to improve for you and you can experience a better quality of life very soon.

  • Thankyou NanT Its a wonderful place to get help this is .....

  • Hi Missy after my first PVI end of July my heart didn't kick off until at least well past a week from procedure.. Of course I had little blips and flutters in between but then I had a bad do of ectopics...then it took me at least 4weeks for my heart to settle and 6 weeks to really turn the corner! Then I had another PVI (as part of a trial) about 9 days ago and like deja vu I had the same bad do roughly about the same time as the first time around but worse, but OK now! Long may it improve!

  • Hi Loo61 thanks for your reply its reassuring and helpful to know this is the same thing has happened.....I am sure I will get out of this eventually ....I'm a bit impulsive and want to feel good again.....so I suppose I need to impose a go slow on my mind as well....

    I send well wishes to you too...may your health improve too....

    Thankyou...

    Jo

  • You are having a bad time but it is still very early days in you recovery from ablation. Many people find that it takes at least 3 months before the real results start to show ( for me it was nearer 6 months although I felt much better immediately just from coming off heart rate meds) so it is not unusual to experience all kinds of heart misbehaviour.

    Hopefully things will start to settle down over the next few weeks but don't push yourself and listen to your body. Rest when you need to. You sound as if you have a lovely husband so are being well looked after.

    Best wishes

  • Hi porriagequeen ....your reply is heart warming.....I was silly enough to think I would feel great asap.....and set myself up for a huge fall I think...... that first week gave me false security ......I will keep reading ever ones posts which gives me positive help..... and will take your advice about resting as my body tells me too....yes my hubby has been wonderful....in fact more than wonderful as he has never had to help around the house in our 40 years of marriage....he's changed so much....and I am being well looked after....

    thanks and best wishes

    Jo

  • To be honest and from personal experience that all seems quite normal. WE are all different and some people feel fine straight away but it always took me at least three months and often longer to recover form my ablations. Doctors seldom explain fully the recovery period which can leave us in panic but be assured we have all been there who have had ablation(s). Try to relax and let time do the healing. It is worth it all in the end.

    Bob

  • Hi Bob Thanks for your reassurance...its nice to know it all sounds normal...the relaxing thing is my problem ...I have bad anxiety problems because of too many problems at once I think...my nerves are a bit shot...so trying to keep that under control....I think I may need some help.... will ask the GP next time I see her....

    Agree with you regards the explanation from doctors.... I wish I had of asked a bit more....but this forum has helped immensely ....

    I will take your advice and relax more for a better outcome ....

    Regards

    Jo

  • Hi Missey. I'd like to echo previous respondents. As far as af goes, I have virtually nothing to complain about at the present (although who knows what the future holds?), but I can imagine how terribly frightening it must be to suffer from all these horrible symptoms. I'm sure that the advice and first hand experience from others on the forum help to reassure you and I wish you well and a very successful outcome to your procedure. I hope you have a speedy recovery and a return to much better health soon. With kindest regards and all good wishes, Peter

  • Hi Peter ... thanks for your reply....yes it helps a lot reading others responses and questions ....it gives me hope that I may get up and go sooner but that depends on the day and how I feel....oh for my 40's and running around like a headless chook....working 10 hour shifts and night duty in a busy regional hospital.... times gone by..... and knowing too much is sometimes a draw back too..... but that's all in the past....I think retirement is looking very immanent...

    With thanks Jo

  • What a journey you have been on. I have only half of the issues you list and find I need to do everything I can think of to work on my spiritual and my thinking positive skills to adjust to the life changes of afib. You are in my thoughts, keep us posted.

  • Hi there, I am also a 58 year old lady and am 4 weeks post ablation (3rd time). I am also suffering ectopic beats and terrible palpitations so we have some things in common.

    I have had great advice from members of this forum and it has definitely put my mind at rest. I was better after my 2nd ablation (the first one never worked at all and I was in permanent AF for around 4 months, 162 bpm), but then I got a nasty water infection and it started my AF again as bad as ever. I'm just waiting for my outpatients appt in 9 weeks and I hope I'll feel better again like I did after the 2nd, I do wonder though if I'll ever be rid of the dreaded thing and I have to say I am doubtful!!!

    The vagus nerve definitely affects my heart, I am absolutely sure of this, if I have over eaten or not eaten enough it will start ectopics and missed beats. I hope somebody someday finds a cure for this ugly condition as there are so many sufferers, in the meantime I wish you all the very best in your recovery. Keep posting and let us know how you are.

    Kind regards. X

  • Hi Kimmieblue.....thanks for your reply....it gives me strength to hang in there and to understand I am not going nuts and its really happening to others that have this done...I think your very brave having gone through this 3 times....I'm not sure if I can do this again.....its way to scary and debilitating for me at the moment. Yes I believe my stomach and Vagus nerve effect my AF as well.....but its hard to get doctors to recognise this and understand the anguish it causes.....

    I hope your recovery continues better for you and I pray some day a cure may be found....but understand this procedure is purely a control method that has limitations....but even I didn't understand what the implications can be after the procedure until it all went pear shaped....

    I would also like to see better support from the cardiologist in relation to post procedural effects and experiences but that's a pipe dream as they are all too busy and time poor.....so here we are talking to each other and supporting each other.....

    Keep getting better Kimmieblue.....thankyou....

    xx Jo

  • I too am a 58 year old lady..... seems to be a few of us on here. I can't offer you any advice, only support which I think this forum will be good for. If my tablets do not help me I know the next stage is ablation.

    Best of luck to you

  • Thanks Moonstone56,..... yes I believe support is very helpful from others experiencing the same things as no one really can relate to how you feel at times, thankyou....and when you decide to have your ablation always call on us for support too as we will be here for you too......

    this is a wonderful site for help and others experiences....

    thanks xx Jo

  • Thanks everyone for you lovely kind words and thoughts I am deeply touched by everyone's support. I had another dreadful night with AF coming and going felt totally exhausted this morning....but am sitting up now, it takes me ages to thaw out in the mornings...

    I am wondering 2 things.... how many people have really bad reflux after AF Ablation procedure and if other than Nexium 40 mg twice a day may be there is some thing else I could be doing, the cough and feeling nauseated is being a bit of a problem, not that I would but I feel like swallowing a bottle of Mylanta at times its just yucky.... I know 10 mls at a time its just over bearing and esp. in the mornings when I wake up and taste last night tea again yuck.... please..

    and I have been told to rest ? but how much exercise are others doing when they feel well enough...I feel I'm getting weaker by the day .... any suggestions would be welcomed please.....

    Again thanks...

    I send wishes of good health to one and all and speedy recovery to those of you who are in the same boat as me at the moment.

  • If I've scoffed too many biscuits in the evening I:-D :-D. know my heart is going to give me what for overnight! I find SUGAR gives me ectopics.....something I need to address!

  • Hi everyone I want to say thankyou to you all for having the patients of saints in helping people like me to get through this process and come to understand what's happening to us as we go through the ablation journey..... I never dreamt it was going to be this rough at times......I've had another rough few days....but am pleased to report (hoping its not a false sense of security here) that things seem to have settled a little and my heart has seen itself to be a little less peed of with me having the ablation.

    Its 4 weeks today. Went and saw my cardiologist in a bit of a mess this morning as I was so tired again a looked a mess....he was concerned that maybe the Verapamil may be causing a few problems so has started weaning process.... He also was concerned that the medication may also be causing the reflux I am still battling with....I am having a Holter monitor tomorrow and a check Echo on the 27 October.... then back to see Cardiologist in a week after that.... as well as gastroenterologist and check for the lung thing in December again....so lots of plans but not too many answers at the moment.... I am finding certain foods are triggers so am going to compile a do not eat list for myself too....

    Regards to all and well wishes to everyone having the procedure now and soon hang in there and thanks BobD your knowledge re this is so helpful....

    Jo

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